Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Owl Eyes

Earlier this month my husband was in the country with the dogs for  their run when he heard Little Sally Pumkinhead barking insistently and loudly.  She was where he could not see her so he followed the sound of her bark which lead him to her and a young owl with one of his wings tangled in a barbwire fence. 

He knew he would not be able to get near the owl so he called the Rocky Mountain Raptor Program  and within an hour Mike Tincher, the program's rehabilitation coordinator, was meeting us out near where the owl was hanging on the wire.  He used a blanket to secure the owl and then my husband helped him use wire cutters to cut the barb wire the to the left and right of the bird's wing.  This was done to keep the bird from being injured even more- wire being caught up in wing tissue and muscle. 

Mike then carried the bird back to his SUV and placed it into a pet carrier for transport back to the raptor facility.

Mike told me he did not expect the owl to live as his wing had been "de-gloved" in the bird's attempts to get untrapped. I told him I really did not think the owl was going to make it as we did not know how long he had been hanging there. I just wanted him to be somewhere safe when he did go instead of suffering even more and then dying in the hot sun.

After placing the owl in his vehicle we went back to were the bird had been and Mike fixed the fence.  He said that was almost as important as saving the bird because farmer's got very upset when they found a piece of their fence missing. 

Last week we got a letter from Rocky Mountain Raptor Program letting us know the owl had not lived as the damage to the wing and the trauma to the bird was too great. This wasn't really a surprising outcome for us as our reason for calling RMRP was to save the bird from a slow painful death.

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